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TrustPower Celebrates New Wind Farm High

Media Statement
Wednesday 12 September, 2007

Note: Strictly Embargoed until 6.00am, Thursday 13th September 2007

TrustPower Celebrates New Wind Farm High For New Zealand

TrustPower's Tararua Wind Farm celebrates another milestone today with the official opening of its Stage 3 development - making it New Zealand's largest Wind Farm in terms of both number of turbines and output.

The addition of 31 new Vestas V90 turbines, the largest and most sophisticated installed in Australasia, has boosted the Tararua Wind Farm from supplying 32,000 Kiwi homes, to 74,000 homes.

The Stage 3 expansion has also made a significant contribution towards reducing New Zealand's greenhouse gas emissions, with each of the new turbines displacing 7,000 tonnes of CO2 emissions each year, in addition to supplying the energy needs of 1,350 homes. During its lifetime, the wind farm will offset more than six million tonnes of CO2 emissions.

TrustPower Chief Executive Keith Tempest adds that the Stage 3 expansion was independently certified as being carbon neutral as from July 5th, just five months after the first machine was commissioned.

"It is amazing that in such a short space of time, before it is even fully operational, this wind farm has been able to offset more carbon emissions than were generated by the manufacture of the turbines themselves, and all of the site work including that created by concrete manufacturing, transportation and earthworks involving large machinery, all of which relies upon fossil fuels."

The Tararua Wind Farm first delivered clean green power to New Zealanders in 1999, using 48 Vestas V47 turbines, each 47 meters in diameter and generating 660kW - roughly one fifth the output of the latest units.

The wind farm was more than doubled in size and output in 2004 with the addition of a further 53 V47 turbines.

The latest expansion, costing NZ$185 million, was completed in 18 months, on time and within budget, during which time the project generated some $50 million of income for the region.

The wind farm opening will be attended by Energy and Climate Change Minister David Parker, Tararua Mayor Maureen Reynolds, Palmerston North Mayor Heather Tanguay, contractors, landowners and a team of TrustPower personnel including acting Chairman Bruce Harker and Chief Executive Keith Tempest.

The ceremony will begin at 2.00 pm at the wind farm site.


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